The Art of Dramatic Readings

Posted by Maria Vicente

There’s nothing funnier than a good dramatic reading. It’s an art (I’m using the term loosely) that all literary-minded people can appreciate. Sometimes a book (or a song or a poem) is written so horribly that it needs to be analyzed, with special attention given to every sentence, every word, every thought. While the writing may not be all that spectacular, the performers are certainly talented. I don’t know how any of the following can get through a dramatic reading without bursting into laughter. Props to them.

Here’s a compilation of the best dramatic readings the Internet has to offer.

The one that started the trend: Christopher Walken reading Lady Gaga’s “Poker Face.”

Part of the “Celebrity Autobiography” series, Kristen Wigg reads poems by Suzanne Somers.

Ellen Degeneres attempts to record the 50 Shades of Grey audiobook.

Gary Oldman reads from R. Kelly’s memoir, Soulacoaster. (Yes, that’s the real title.)

James Earl Jones recites lyrics from “Baby” by Justin Bieber.

This one is really impressive: Ira David Wood reads “Sexy And I Know It” by LMFAO.

…and just for fun, here’s Jesse Tyler Ferguson performing Lady Gaga’s “Alejandro.” (It’s not technically a dramatic “reading” since he is singing half of the time, but it’s still exaggerated and hilarious.)

Maria Vicente is a literary agent intern living in Ottawa, Canada. She likes coffee, books, snail mail, and magic. You can find her on Twitter (@MsMariaVicente) or check out her website (